News analysis of 2017 French election’s main candidates: Macron vs Le Pen

Why Macron won the French elections?

Emmanuel Macron just won the French election, dominating with almost two-thirds of the vote to beat out his rival, Marine Le Pen. Macron, who was considered the front-runner ahead of the run-off, campaigned on a pro-business platform, while Le Pen ran on an anti-immigrant platform. Despite an apparent hack of Macron’s private e-mail account in the final days leading up to the vote, many voters called him the “lesser of two evils”. The ER analysis examines how both candidates were reflected in media coverage.

News analysis on the media coverage of the two presidential candidates

With Event Registry, we analysed which were the key topics in Macron’s and Le Pen’s media coverage. The concept graph below shows which concepts are often mentioned in media together with each candidate’s name.

As seen in the concept graphs below, the distance between the candidate’s name and the concept shows the frequency of mentions: the more often the concept mentioned in the news articles together with the candidate, the closer it is to their name.

Concept graph: Marine Le Pen.
Concept graph: Emmanuel Macron.

As we can see from the concept graphs, some of the concepts appear for both candidates. Mainly because the coverage of media for both candidates is placed in a context of the French Elections 2017, therefore it is expected that some topics overlap.

More interesting are the concepts that are more frequently mentioned with either one or the other candidate. News articles about Marine Le Pen often mentioned concepts such as the National Front, Far-Right Politics and Donald Trump who supports her. Macron, who won with his centric En Marche! movement appeared in news together with the following concepts: centrism, Manuel Valls and Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

The concept graph below shows which concepts appear together in news articles and how they relate to each other.

By scrolling over the “Far-right politics” concept, the system highlights concepts related to it.

Identified events about the French presidential candidates

Using Event Registry, we identified events about each of the main candidates (groups of articles that talk about the same happening) covered in the English language.

Searching for events about Marine Le Pen

List of events about Le Pen displays titles such as:

  • CNN Panics over French Election, Admits Le Pen Could Win
  • Marine Le Pen refuses to repay €300k of ‘misspent’ EU funds,
  • Israel condemns Marine Le Pen’s Holocaust remarks, etc.

Titles of events about Macron included:

  • Emmanuel Macron Declared French President In Early Vote Counts,
  • Macron campaign says its emails have been subjected to ‘massive, coordinated’ hacking,
  • French election: Macron ‘most convincing’ in final debate – BBC News

The reason for Macron’s win

How was Macron, a man with no electoral experience, able to win the French presidency? Explore the reasons for his victory by finding several similar articles to “5 reasons why Macron won French Elections” by The Daily Star.

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Aleksandra Sirec

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